Todays fitness tips will be tips on how to start the gym again after having a long period off from training such as when the gyms closed for Covid.
You may often find yourself wanting to pick right back up where you left off when you start back at the gym however before doing this, follow the tips below to get yourself ready!
Have a GAME PLAN!
It’s always good to have a game plan, as you won’t be able to train the exact same as you once did… straight away – this is because during this period, you would have gotten slightly weaker since you haven’t been as active for a while. So, unless you’ve consistently trained with similar equipment and kept the same intensity your body won’t be able to cope with jumping right back and training how you where beforehand.
Why…what’s the worse that can happen?
If you try to train with the same weight/intensity as the way you did before, you may be likely to over exert yourself and potentially risk having an injury or on the minimal end, having really bad muscle soreness & cramps for a while. By doing this you won’t have made the most out of your week back, as you’ll spend the following week just trying to recover from the muscle soreness.
Train smart, not harder! Try to dial back the volume and intensity for a minimum of 7 to 10 days.
For those of you that have virtually had NO exercise during lockdown, I would highly recommend you dropping the volume and intensity of your workouts to at least 50% – 60% intensity of what you typically would do! I know it sounds pretty drastic but hear me out.. reducing the intensity and volume it allows you to still get a decent amount of workouts in the first week of starting back without exerting yourself too much.
Pro Tip – if you want to minimise the potential amount of DOMS, you can try having active rest days. For example, on the days yours not actually going into the gym to lift weights or even in the gym at all, try doing something more cardio based. Nothing too strenuous to fatigue the muscles but something just to keep the body and muscles active such as brisk walking or bodyweight active movements like star jumps .
The Home Workout Crew
Resistant Band/ Bodyweight Training
For those of you that tried to stay active but only had very limited equipment such as resistant bands or doing bodyweight exercises.. salute to you for staying active but unfortunately this form of training wouldn’t have retained as much strength compared to those who was able to get ahold of some challenging weights.
With this in mind, if you’re in this category again i would recommend reducing your intensity and volume by 60- 70% for the first 7 to 10 days.
Mini Home Gym Training
For those of you that was able to get yourself a decent amount of weights, it may not be as heavy as you did in the gym but still made it challenging for you, Id would recommend dropping your intensity and volume down to 65% – 85% depending on how frequently you trained at home and the compound movements you where doing.
For example, if you managed to only get dumbbells – on your DB chest press, you will probably still be able to achieve 75% of what you did before.
Just remember! Yes, you may be eager to get back into it and a little excited (Me too) but don’t do too much that you cant visit back in the next few days because you’re too sore! Use a spot if you need one
Things to remember!
As said previously, chances are majority of us have gotten weaker during this period as we haven’t be able to train consistently or as intense and may be thinking “damn, I haven’t made much or any progress” or “I’ve lost so much progress” DON’T. What is done, is done. All you can do now is make a comeback.
If you’re one of those people who have trained during the gym closures for lockdown, it won’t take you that long to get back to where you once was. For example, I would say it would take me at least 3 weeks to a month to get back to where I somewhat was in terms of performance.
For more information on any of the above be sure to check out the YouTube video below!